OWO Information

Location: Southeastern Nigeria
Population: n/a
Language: Yoruba (Kwa)
Neighbors: n/a
Types of Art: n/a
History: The Owo site was first excavated in 1969 by Ekpo Eyo in the contemporary Yoruba town of Owo. Archaeologists have found terracotta sculptures dating to the 15th century. Owo is situated halfway between the Nigerian towns of Ife and Benin in southern Nigeria, and so it is not surprising that Owo art displays characteristics of both traditions. Some of the Owo objects show similarities to the art of Benin, while others display characteristics that are unique to Owo. Ife was then declining in power as Oyo, another Yoruba city situated in the north, was ascending. Benin in the 15th century was expanding its influence to both the east and west and must have affected Owo. Owo claims that it was never conquered by Benin, but there are many elements of Owo culture clearly borrowed from Benin, such as chieftaincy titles and the royal regalia and crowns.
Economy: n/a
Political Systems: n/a
Religion: n/a
Credit: McIntyre, L. Lee and Christopher D. Roy. 'Art and Life in Africa Online.' 1998: The Art and Life in Africa Project,